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Abstract

This paper discusses the traceability concept in the food business. Based on the transaction costs economics, it describes the adoption of traceability mechanisms in the UK beef market and examines the effects on the governance mechanisms in the production and distribution chain. The basic hypothesis is that, in the absence of information technology (IT), strictly coordinated mechanisms will occur. As the use of IT spreads, a decrease in information asymmetry and, consequently, more flexible governance structures may be observed.

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